Color Me Curious: What Is Color Theory?

Your Friends at Opalberry

Have you ever wondered why some colors look good together and why some, well, don’t? The science and art of using colors, the color theory, explains how color influences our perception of the world among us. 

A familiar concept to artists and designers, paint by numbers enthusiasts can also benefit from the color theory when it comes to mixing and matching colors. Knowing the basics can help you create captivating pieces for your space. 

Understanding color charts

A basic art concept taught in schools, the color wheel is a visual tool used to determine which colors complement each other and which ones clash. The color wheel is made up of three distinct color groups: primary, secondary, and tertiary. 

  • Primary colors are naturally occuring and cannot be replicated by mixing colors together. Red, blue, and yellow make up the primary colors.
  • Secondary colors are created by mixing any of the primary colors. Violet, green, and orange make up the secondary colors.

  • Tertiary colors are created by mixing a primary and a secondary color. Some tertiary colors are blue-green, yellow-orange, and red-violet

Warm or cool: Color temperature

Colors come in warm and cool. If you want to find out which colors are considered warm or cool, take your color wheel and split it in half. Warm colors include reds, oranges, and yellows, while cool colors include greens, purples, and blues. While black, white and gray are neither warm or cool and are considered neutral colors

Understanding color temperature and knowing which colors to use in your paintings dramatically elevates the overall quality of your paint project. The colors in your paintings can help set the mood and tone, depending on which colors you use. Warm colors evoke excitement and warmth, while cool colors lend a sense of calm and peace to your paintings

How are colors created?

While the color wheel only comprises twelve colors, colors can be expanded through hues, shades, and tints. By expanding colors, you also create depth and texture in your paintings

  • Hue is the color in its purest form making it the point of reference in mixing colors.
  • Shade is mixing in black with any color, creating a darker shade. 
  • Tint is mixing in white with any color, making a paler, lighter shade. 
  • Tone is mixing in gray with any color, toning down the intensity or brightness of any color

Paint by numbers kits are a fun way to learn about the basics of color theory while creating a piece to adorn your space with. With an array of designs to choose from, Opalberry paint by numbers kits come with a complimentary set of acrylic paints, specifically mixed and matched so your painting shines from every angle

Have fun creating! 

P.S. To be notified on our newest blog posts about tricks, news, and tips on paint by numbers, and to get access to Opalberry’s exciting special offers and promos on our premium adult paint by number kitsbecome a VIP member by subscribing to our mailing list here or joining our Facebook group community here.    

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